I have been wanting to interview the one and only Rich Rurshell for a few weeks now, but I’m a procrastinator. Sorry Rich. I am super excited that we finally done this! Rich is fun and kind and a very talented writer. I just read his story “Nathan” in Phuket Tattoo and “Date Night” in Fireburst and loved them both! Nathan was probably my favorite of the two because it was so exciting and scary, but both were very well written and creative. Rich seems to have a great imagination.
Now on to so fun!
What are you working on now?
Right now, I’m working on my World War 4 story for Zombie Pirate Publishing.
Tell me more!
It’s a story about war between corporations rather than nations. Nations with contracts with these companies, fight the opposition. The story follows a peace-keeper who opposes both sides of the war with miraculous tactics.
What is the first book that made you cry?
Not sure. Norwegian Wood maybe. I don’t actually cry from reading books very often. Norwegian Wood is the only one I can remember where I actually did.
Aw. I cry to everything.
Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
I guess it can go either way. If you really believe in yourself and can promote yourself well, that can go a long way to helping with increasing your fan base. You can also turn people off by constantly talking about yourself like some sort of god. Whether you have the goods to back it up or not, I think it helps to be confident, and self promotion is necessary to succeed, but it needs to be tasteful, or it may be negatively received.
Do you think someone could be a writer if they don’t feel emotions strongly?
Certainly. Some people operate in a formulaic way. They know how to convey emotions, or word things to achieve a desired response, without actually being emotionally attached. And of course, outside of fiction, people just have to write about what readers want to read about. You can’t be emotionally invested in everything, you just need to know how to write to keep people reading.
What’s your favorite color?
Black? I quite like black things. Lots of black clothes. Red and green are pretty cool too.
What’s your favorite food?
Chocolate. I do enjoy a nice hot curry too.
OMG. Chocolate is my favorite!
What is your favorite TV show?
Black Mirror. I love it. Such great observation on humanity and where it is heading. A fine blend of how technology is probably going to be, and the reasons why it should never be allowed to.
Honourable mentions: Stranger Things (awesome, great series), Dexter (started out really good, fell short from about half way), Jam (90s dark sketch show), and Brasseye (90s fake news show.)
Do you believe in love at first sight?
No. I certainly believe in weak-at-the-knees, euphoric attraction at first sight, but not true love. True love is accepting and loving someone despite their flaws, and you can’t possibly see that in somebody at first sight. I also believe the “love at first sight” phenomenon is made up of physical attraction, and the wanting for that person to be your ideal partner. Until you find out otherwise, you fool yourself into believing that they are that person.
Do you write by hand or type?
I type. Everywhere I submit to, accepts submissions by email, so it’s easier and quicker to just start out typing. Everything is there already when it comes to editing, you don’t need to rewrite every single word, just make changes to what you’ve already written.
I do make notes by hand though. I usually have various scraps of paper with notes about plot points I need to mention at various points in the story and other things I need to remember.
Music or silence?
Usually silence. I sometimes put music on when I start writing, but I end up realising after a couple of hours, that it finished ages ago, and I’ve been sitting in silence. If I do put music on, it has to be instrumental. Lyrics get into my head and distract me if there are vocals.
Name 5 favorite movies. Why did you pick these?
Alien/Aliens/Alien 3. A great set of films. I watched them all regularly when I was at high school. Alien is a great horror/sci-fi/suspense film, Aliens has action and excitement, and Alien 3 was bleak and miserable and an excellent end to the story (that’s right…as far as I’m concerned, it finished with Alien 3).
Terminator/Terminator 2. Another 80s/90s set of movies where I disregard the sequels I didn’t like. The first two were excellent though. Two more films I watched the hell out of as a teenager. Terminator is sci-fi/horror at its best. Terminator 2 is action packed and entertaining from start to finish.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. A genuine case of a movie doing the book justice. Really good. I knew from the first two minutes I was going to love the film. Really well made, great actors.
One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. Such a range of emotions with this one. Hilarious, tragic, hopeful, shocking, sad. The last twenty minutes packs in so many emotions, you don’t really know what to feel at the end. An all time great.
Scarface. Tony Montana is the ultimate badass. Some really tense scenes, great dialogue. A heavy watch.
Where do you get your ideas?
Various places. Usually from things I have experienced, though heavily changed and embellished. Sometimes a place gives me a setting/situation, sometimes a person gives me a character, sometimes an event gives me a plot. And sometimes just a submission call will make me think in a slightly different way, and I produce something I wouldn’t usually write.
Are you a morning person or a night person?
Night. For sure. Always have been.
How do you select the names of your characters?
Sometimes I’ll use a name with a meaning which fits the character, though I try to be subtle about it, since parents can’t name their children based on traits they don’t yet have. Usually, I just mix up names of people I know, or know of.
How did you begin writing?
I was reading a short story collection by Philip K. Dick, and thought I’d give writing stories a go. Then I did.
What are your favorite hobbies?
Playing music and playing video games.
I play guitar, bass guitar, Ukelele and sing (not all simultaneously though), and like playing live, as well as recording music. I love playing RPGs. Though, I don’t get much time for it anymore, I’ll occasionally have a period of playing a game to escape the day to day grind.
Pen or pencil?
Whatever is closest when I need it. If both are close at hand, I’ll usually choose the pen…then switch to the pencil because the pen doesn’t bloody work.
Haha. This is the best answer I’ve ever heard to this question!
Tell us something you hate doing. Why?
Waiting on hold whilst phoning a company about something really tedious. I don’t really want to make the call in the first place, but then to have to wait for the privilege of doing so grinds my gears. Receiving cold calls pisses me off too, though I’ve now realised that if you tell them right at the start that you are not the billpayer, and the billpayer isn’t at home, they leave you alone.
Where can we find more of your work?
Links to all the stories I have had published can be found at www.facebook.com/richrurshellauthor
Thanks so much for hanging out and talking to me, Rich! I hope we can do this again sometime. It’s been fun!